First Business

June 22, 2010

Competitive Theory and Business Legitimacy

The Economist once called Michael Porter the "doyen of living management gurus." Porter is the guru of competitive strategy, the one who told companies that their route to success lay in competing not just against their direct competitors, but against their suppliers and customers as well. A great number of companies have spent the last 20 to 30 years doing just that.

So when Michael Porter says something new, it’s worth noting, as with his recent piece for Businessweek.com, "How Big Business Can Regain Legitimacy." The idea of regaining legitimacy implies that legitimacy has been lost, which is precisely Porter’s point. And the loss of business’ legitimacy is a shame not just for business, but for society at large

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